UPDATE: Xavier Ouellet was officially put on waivers at noon Sunday.
Since it was expected that Xavier Ouellet would not have a spot on Detroit’s roster this upcoming season, it’s not surprising to see reports that the Red Wings are planning on buying out his contract.
Expect the Detroit Red Wings to place defenceman Xavier Ouellet on waivers for buyout.— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) June 24, 2018
As the buyout information from CapFriendly shows, this is a smart move, both financially and in terms of clearing a roster spot.
To put it simply, rather than having Ouellet take up a $1.3M cap hit for one season, he will take up $167k this season and $217k next season against the cap. Basically nothing.
It’s likely the Wings tried to trade Ouellet, but this indicates that nobody was willing to give up an asset for him.
In addition to freeing up just over a million in cap space this season, it also opens up a roster spot for someone like Hicketts or Hronek. I’ve made no secret that I want to see them both up here, and the more spots available, the more chances there are of that happening.
All in all, a small move, but a smart one for Detroit.